What’s in your Room 101?

Introducing our intern Owen Coutts

Owen Coutts on the trail

With What Mountain Bike hitting issue 101, we had an excuse to build our own Room 101 especially for mountain bikers.


Take a look inside the issue (on-sale now) to find out what made it in. We had so many people joining in that there were too many to fit into the issue, however, so here’s a few that just for you – ably complied by our office intern, Owen Coutts.

Hello, I’m Owen the intern.

I’ve been riding mountain bikes since 1995. I’ve done some downhilling in Finland and I’ve done a race or two in France (my top result would be this year, when I finished only 30secs down on Matti “The Finnish Pinner” Lehikoinen in a winter race). I’ve also done a cyclo-cross race (first in singlespeed class but last overall – ho hum), some XC and marathon races and a few 24s – my team even won a Finnish 24hr race! Enough talk about racing though; it’s fun but I really should talk about riding, as that’s what I love.

Flowing technical, rooty, muddy, rocky, natural and manmade singletrack is what I get really excited about. I can get a bit geeky about the technical bike aspects, but give me a flowing slice of singletrack and I’m a happy man.

But enough about me – here’s a sneaky peek into mountain biking’s very own Room 101, this time from our own people’s champion Supersonic (aka Paul Hayes).

Supersonic’s Room 101

  • The weather – Mother Nature seems to have skipped summer and gone straight from spring to autumn.
  • Undamped forks – The scourge of many a budget bike
  • Undamped forks with no top out bumper – For the love of god, it’s a 2p piece of rubber!
  • Bikes that spec hydro brakes and 9-speed drivetrains yet still fit a two bob fork.
  • Plain gauge spokes on expensive bikes – Penny pinching.
  • Marin’s Alchemist – Was always so wrong.
  • Supermarket bikes – Only experts know how to build them. And experts have better bikes anyway.
  • Ever increasing travel – In ten years the SID will be a DH fork.
  • Thomson and Orange users – Fanboys of the worst type 😉
  • Prices – Up, up and up. Come on Gordon, abolish VAT on bikes!
  • Cyclists – The ones who ride on pavements, jump red lights and don’t use lights, that is. This is why the public hates us.
  • The Queen – She should have given Peaty an MBE by now.
  • Parts manufacturers – They all seem to use the same weighing scales that are curiously set to minus 20g before they weigh their wares…

Owen’s Room 101

Here are my entries for Room 101 – think of them as yin to Supersonic’s yang.

  • Dog poo in your tyres
  • Leaky / non-waterproof waterproof jackets
  • Full DH body armour on XC trails and on XC bike – Calm down dear, it’s not a DH race
  • Racer boys on fun group rides – It’s only a fun ride and not a race.
  • Rubbish trail / land access – Why haven’t we got this sorted already?
  • Litter bugs. Leave no trace
  • People moaning about the weather – You just need better clothes
  • People who only ride one style and get grumpy at other styles of riding. e.g. DH riders moaning about XC riders and dirt jumpers moaning about fixie kids etc. We’re all on bikes we love and the cars are the problem anyway!
  • Caveman comments about female riders. It’s 2009, already! If we want mountain biking to grow (which we do) we need to be inclusive, and not make dumb jokes. Grow up.
  • Silliness written by a high-profile female rider. Please think before you speak (or write), as people are still doing a lot to make racing equal between the sexes; don’t put that in jeopardy with thoughtless remarks. Power to the Katie Comptons of the world, prize purses should be equal.
  • Room 101: It’s bad karma, dudes and dudettes, too negative for me. Mountain biking is all about finding your inner peace and recharging your zen. I sound like a full-on hippy: I hope I’m making Mr Fisher proud!

That’s our Room 101, what would you like to see included?  Go to our forum thread here to make your contribution.